With Justin Bieber, MC Hammer joining Psy on stage and Stevie Wonder paying tribute to the late Dick Clark, The American Music Awards was supposed to be a huge televisual event, but not many people switched on to watch it.
We say 'not many', but Sunday's ceremony and performance show broadcast live on Walt Disney Co's ABC television was watched by an average 9.5 million viewers. Still, that's down from 12 million in 2011, and represents the worst return in terms of viewership in the show's history. Perhaps more importantly, the show dropped 21 percent of its viewers compared to last year in the much coveted and key 18-49 demographic most prized by advertisers, who fund the networks with their big bucks. The reason of this could be because it was up against football, which brings in huge figures, and ABC said the telecast was the top TV show of the night with women and teens.
The night also saw a touching tribute to the show's creator, Dick Clark, who created the American Music Awards as an alternative to The Grammys. Ryan Seacrest said of Clark, "Dick loved the power of music and its ability to create pure joy." Stevie Wonder, a great friend of Clarks, said, "I remember his friendship and his kindness. I remember his love for music and his love for people. I challenge you, you as communicators, leaders, politicians, spiritual leaders: Put your love first like we musicians put our music first... Then we can be jamming until the break of dawn," The Washington Post quoted him as saying.